Indoor Garden Checklist: Everything You Need To Get Started
If you’re interested in starting a year-round garden, consider hydroponics. But like any hobby, hydroponics comes with an assortment of tools to familiarize yourself with before you begin cultivating tomatoes, peppers, and leafy greens in your basement or backroom. Here’s an indoor garden checklist: everything you need to get started. Review it and get a feel for the implements you’ll need to make your indoor garden a cornucopia of fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs.
Grow Pots and Other Containers
If you buy a self-contained hydroponics system, it will come equipped with all the necessary containers and apparatuses for starting an indoor garden. If you choose to expand your system later, it’s worth acquainting yourself with the individual parts, especially the hydroponic grow containers. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Familiarize yourself with their construction and which containers are best suited for which plants.
Growing up without sunlight is hard for a plant. Thank goodness for grow lights, then. As your garden grows, you’ll find yourself investing in better lighting that provides the correct wattage per square foot and the right spectrum for promoting photosynthesis. Lighting is costly, but it’s a worthwhile investment.
Give your plants a place to put down roots, literally. Growing media is the sterile material inside the containers which keeps plants suspended above the nutrient solution. You must select the best media for your intended crops. Choose from coco coir (media made from coconuts’ hairy husks), clay pellets, perlite (a glass-like substance produced by volcanic activity), rock wool, and others. Growing media replaces soil, which helps preserve natural resources.
Plants need to eat just like we do. Well, not exactly like we do. When they grow in the soil, they derive nutrition by using their roots to absorb water and nutrients delivered through compost and fertilizers. It’s the same process in hydroponics, except they don’t need to burrow through dirt to find food. You provide the nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and others through a solution of water and nutrients that recirculates throughout the system. You can accomplish this with our next tool.
Water Pump/Air Pump/Fans
To close out this indoor garden checklist: everything you need to get started in hydroponics, some set-ups are simple affairs. Wick systems deliver water and nutrients to your plant through ropes or a similar absorbent intermediary. For example, ebb and flow and drip systems require a water pump to keep the water and nutrients flowing upward from the tank and to the plants. Nutrient film technique and deep-water culture systems, on the other hand, require an air pump to provide oxygen to plants via the solution. With that in mind, fans play a part in helping plants stay aerated and cool.